Miami Dolphins receivers Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson were the first players of the 2018 NFL season to kneel during the national anthem, and as of Sunday evening, they remain the only athletes to do so.
Praising Stills and Wilson for their bold act in the face of controversy, Colin Kaepernick tweeted on Sunday afternoon that they showed "unwavering strength by fighting for the oppressed." He continued, "They have not backed down, even when attacked and intimidated. Their courage will move the world forward!"
After Kaepernick and other players first made headlines in 2016 for kneeling during the national anthem before games, the NFL released a statement in May of 2018, outlining its new national anthem policy. The new rules stated that players would no longer be required to report to the field for the anthem, but if they are on the field, they must stand.
The new policy was later put on hold to allow the NFL Player's Association to further discuss the rules with the league, however. According to a new report from ESPN, the policy likely won't be enforced by the NFL this season because "too many people have stances too strong to figure out a compromise."
While Kaepernick is no longer in the league himself, he reemerged as a focal point of NFL preseason talk this month when he became the face of Nike's 30th anniversary "Just Do It" campaign.
The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback has been out of the league since the end of the 2016 season, but Denver Broncos player Brandon Marshall recently told TMZ that Kaepernick is still eyeing a return to football. "I talked to him today and yesterday," Marshall said. "He's in high spirits. He's excited." He added, "I know he still wants to play football. He still loves the game very very much. He's still working out."